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Efficiency and Productivity | Board of Regents Annual Report 2011

Efficiency and Productivity Efficiency and Productivity

Iowa’s Public Universities and Special Schools shall be increasingly efficient
and productive

“As leaders in the use of sustainable practices to reach efficiency goals, and through strong collaborations, Iowa’s Public Universities and Special Schools are committed to highly efficient and productive operations.”

  • Regent Jack Evans

Iowa’s Public Universities and Special Schools enthusiastically support collaborative initiatives that yield efficiencies for all of the Regent institutions, particularly in light of significantly reduced budgets. In FY 2011, the institutions evaluated and implemented numerous efficiency measures, particularly in the areas of purchasing and information technology (IT).

Iowa’s Public Universities reported continued success in their longstanding efforts to utilize joint purchasing agreements to maximize purchasing efficiencies. In FY 2011, the projected savings from new, collaborative purchasing agreements for maintenance and repairs, disaster recovery services, green cleaning chemicals, and other goods and services, exceeded $1.1 million. Also in FY 2011, joint Regent contract purchases totaled $328 million, an increase of nearly 15% over the previous year. The Regent institutions manage more than 65% of their total purchases through strategic partnerships with vendors (strategic sourcing) and at costs below private sector benchmarks of one-half cent per dollar spent.

The Regent institutions are committed to identifying and implementing new efficiency and effectiveness measures in their IT operations. As evidence of the success of the universities’ efforts, each consistently ranks in the top third among its peers in the productivity and efficiency of its IT operations.

In addition, the universities’ IT and purchasing departments regularly collaborate and jointly bid major IT purchases for products used on all three campuses. As a matter of standard practice, they share their gains in competitive pricing for the benefit of all three universities. As a result, in FY 2011, the universities realized greater efficiencies in their hardware and software acquisitions by incorporating joint contracting opportunities within their purchasing programs.

Beyond the many efficiencies realized in purchasing and IT, which will continue to produce savings into the future, the Board of Regents will continue its long-standing efforts to identify savings in administrative operations, course delivery and other expenditures. This includes the ongoing use of sustainable practices, which are important contributors to numerous efficiency initiatives.

Iowa’s Public Universities and Special Schools are committed to enhancing the value of their continued collaboration, further improving the quality of services and programs, and realizing additional cost savings through the identification of other potential efficiencies, the sharing of solutions and ideas, and the joint implementation of new technologies.